Liang Wenbo is the first player through to the Winners’ Group of the Championship League after winning Group 1 on Tuesday in Leicester.
The original non-ranking version of the Championship League is back on the calendar following the ranking event edition at the outset of the campaign that was won by David Gilbert.
Graeme Dott boasted an imperious record from the round-robin phase of Championship League Group 1, claiming victories in all six of his league encounters to comfortably finish on top.
Liang, Ryan Day, and Jack Lisowski each recorded three victories and three defeats to narrowly qualify for the knockout stage ahead of Gary Wilson, Tom Ford, and Zhou Yuelong.
In the last four, Lisowski ended Dott’s streak with a 3-1 triumph while Liang edged Day in a decider, before the Chinese competitor prevailed in the final with breaks of 136, 91, and 90.
Liang will subsequently feature in the Winners’ Group in February, with six more competitors set to join him at the Morningside Arena.
Lisowski, Dott, Day, and fifth-place Gary Wilson will all get another opportunity when they proceed to compete in Group 2 on Wednesday and Thursday, with Ford and Zhou now eliminated from the competition.
Joe Perry, Lu Ning, and Xiao Guodong will be the newcomers who enter the fray in the invitational tournament.
This edition of the Championship includes seven groups comprising seven players in each, with each group winner progressing to a final Winners’ Group to determine the champion.
Click here to view the Group 2 draw (times: cet)
Featured photo credit: WST